You can read about programming in Java all you want, but it won't help you one bit until you actually sit down and write a program yourself. With this in mind, I *do* suggest that you complete SOME programming problems, whether from Thinking in Java or some other text. From the little I've read of Bruce Eckel's work, I think he is great at explaining the topics and giving clear examples. I don't know how useful you will find the solutions manual, though. If you are able to attempt the problem without looking at the answer right away, it may be a good tool to use when you get stuck. However, there are forums like those here at Java Ranch that can be just as helpful. Also, these forums may be more able to customize the information to your exact needs to help clarify the specific problems you encounter. So in my opinion, you will probably find that the solutions are only of limited use. Perhaps you should try some of the exercises before you decide to purchase the solutions manual. At least that's my recommendation.
Oh no...That's exactly what I meant. The solutions will only be used to check my answers afterwards. I just wanted to know firsthand how the TIJ exercises helped in improving one's understanding of Java's concepts.
Originally posted by PJ Ch: ...I just wanted to know firsthand how the TIJ exercises helped in improving one's understanding of Java's concepts.
Absolutely! Thinking in Java was my primary text, and I worked through most of the exercises. These do take a lot of time (especially if you're new to programming), but that's where the real learning takes place.
To echo what Layne said above, I recommend trying it without the solutions manual. There are other resources that you should become accustomed to using, especially since "real life" problems don't have an answer key. [ January 24, 2005: Message edited by: marc weber ]
"We're kind of on the level of crossword puzzle writers... And no one ever goes to them and gives them an award." ~Joe Strummer sscce.org